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Career Tips

Shopping for a Rockin’​ Mastermind? Ask the hard questions BEFORE you say YES!

Napoleon Hill touted the virtues of collaborative brainstorming and problem solving in his classic “Think and Grow Rich.” After all, if masterminds could work for geniuses like Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Warren G. Harding and Harvey Firestone (who were in one together, calling themselves the Vagabonds), imagine how shared learning through a mastermind could catapult YOUR career?

Ask these important questions to find the RIGHT mastermind for you and your precious business:

  • Is this mastermind led by someone who “gets it” and “gets you”? The energy, sharing and spirit must align because you’re entering into a commitment to be both a generous giver and an excellent receiver as a mastermind contributor.
  • Do you prefer an informal/unscripted volunteer group vs an organized program with milestones and structure to move you along a specific growth plan?
  • How does the cadence and quality of the group’s content match your learning style (and does it match up with your weakest focus areas)?

Get comfortable with getting uncomfortable to learn more and hone your skills.

  • How much time is allotted to YOU and YOUR needs in 1:1 coaching and in the “hot seat”? Expect to pay (and reap rewards) for 1:1 executive engagement, unless you choose to save money and buy access strictly to a group discussion or DIY content machine. (There are great reasons why any of these may be right for you.)
  • How much direct 1:1 coaching will you get from the leader vs interaction from the group members or guest experts?
  • Will the mastermind make you smarter, stronger and faster in decision-making (since educated, collaborative decisions shorten your learning curve and yield exponential growth)?

Everyone makes mistakes…even the most successful people out there. But, what achievers do better than others is recognize the patterns that are causing those mistakes and never repeat them again. In short, they learn from pain—their own and the pain of others. – Success Magazine

  • Can the leader support me through career transition to create multiple revenue streams and a solid “plan B”?

Most folks recognize that lifetime careers at a single company are rare these days. They rely on masterminds to help think out loud about the uncertainties of their industry and build a loyal tribe who follows them anywhere.

I built a prolific Rock on Success Mastermind in response to the challenges and complaints I’d heard about others with no real leadership involvement, hands-off approach, etc. So my goal was to empower folks like you to ROCK your business and your life without selling your soul or losing your mind.

It creates a surrogate “board of directors” or “personal advisory board” so that you can share freely and grow together. Strict privacy and confidentiality rule so that when you share in the “hot seat” we can totally focus on you and your challenges, wins and hottest issue to work through together. Folks get very direct advice and support, with weekly 1:1 coaching as well as group feedback.

Masterminds vary, but I built this one to also deliver valuable content that cycles through 7 modules, open every 2 weeks so you have time to absorb the info and work on assignments and “comfort zone challenges.” With my 30-year background in marketing, PR and social media strategy, I chose to focus on business process that help newbie and seasoned rock star business professionals short cut their learning and accelerate their growth in 7 key areas.

  • Focus on Strength
  • Action
  • Environment
  • Sales Skills
  • Marketing Skills
  • Money Mindset
  • Confidence

How do I know what’s best for me?

You will want to think about your goals, your weaknesses and see if the content supports a strategic path that gives you what YOU need. Some groups are simply just talk on a weekly or monthly basis: the freebies tend to see lower commitment when there’s no “skin in the game.”

You’ll decide which may be enough and how fast you want to grow. Have a frank discussion with the group leader. Check out their testimonials. Talk to members, ask hard questions and get specific examples of success.

Most importantly, see how YOU FEEL: if the energy lifts you up and inspires you to grow stronger, smarter, faster then you are in the right place.

Hope this helps on your search, good luck. You ROCK!

Pat

WHY VISION BOARDS ROCK: Manifest the career and the life YOU deserve in the next year…and decade!

A VISION BOARD IS a collection of images, quotes, and symbols that have meaning to you and bring out feelings of joy, peace, love, and happiness. They represent your dream career and life.

The Power of a Vision Board

Whether or not you’re a fan of the bestseller, The Secret, one thing is undeniably true: That which we focus on we attract more of.

If you spend all your time worrying about money, it seems to slip right through your fingers. If you obsess over your weight, the pounds stubbornly hold on. And if you daydream about relaxing in the Caribbean sun, well, you’re a lot more likely to find yourself on a beach chair in the near future.

This isn’t some airy-fairy make-believe, either. We’ve known for decades that daydreams have power, and that purposeful visualization is the key to greater success in every area of life. So let’s ROCK your business & your life starting RIGHT NOW.

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how you create your vision board, it only matters that you do create one. (Or more.) I recommend a minimum of one every year – and ideally, one each new quarter as we embark upon a new 90-day success plan.

Having this tool in your arsenal makes it much more likely you’ll achieve your dreams, as well as virtually ensuring your dreams will be larger than they were before you began your vision board adventure.

Before you begin though, here are the most important things to remember about your vision board.

1.     It’s yours. There is no right or wrong way to create your dreams.

2.     Dream big! Your vision board should not be filled with things that you could easily attain next week. A new cell phone has no place on your vision board.

3.     Spend time with it. A vision board is a living document, and it will work better when it has your attention for at least a few minutes every single day.

Whether you create a stunning collage of individually framed images you carefully collected over the course of a year, or you build it on your iPad from stock photos, give vision boards a try. You might just be pleasantly surprised at the power they can wield in your life and your business.

If you’re looking to join a tribe and work on your vision board with more fun and accountability, here are two great options:

  1. Let’s chat about an in-person or virtual vision board workshop for your group
  2. Give the gift of a vision board online course to someone you care about, and enroll yourself, too. You’ll enjoy sharing a magical time to:
  • Get clear on exactly HOW to work toward your dreams over the next 90 days
  • Focus on your blessings and gratitude
  • Prioritize and manifest your goals
  • Create a vision board as a daily reminder of what matters most
  • BONUS: Network and brainstorm with the go-givers in our exclusive Rock On Success Facebook group to help achieve success FASTER

Rock on, my friend. Share a photo or thoughts on what belongs on YOUR vision board.

It’s gonna be a GREAT new year!

Pat

Not sure what your prospects want or need? Go ahead and ASK!

Your challenges are not uniquely your own: many entrepreneurs struggle with doubt or lack clear direction. Collaborate problem-solving among the group offers a terrific way to learn from each other.

We’re finding a common challenge that’s bubbled up: business leaders want to grow but they aren’t clear on how to tell their story to their ideal clients so they can “sell more.” When peeling back the onion, we found confusion around the culprit:

  1. Failing to focus on one key service or product (get one sales funnel going well and then replicate that success vs scattering energy across lots of inefficient efforts)
  2. Ineffectively communicating that you have exactly what customers desire
  3. Unclear packages and pricing (so customers have an easy way to say YES to you)

One great way to gain traction is to literally ASK folks about their biggest pain points using open-ended questions. Reach out to your warm market in your email lists, Facebook and LinkedIn connections or groups to better understand their greatest pain or opportunity (the low-hanging fruit).

This is NOT sales pitch time, but rather a chance to humbly engage and build relationships. Sure, some folks may raise their hand and ask for help right away. It’s important to understand in your prospects’ own words what is working, or not, in their business. What problem do you solve for them…and how do they FEEL when you provide your support?

Next, get clear on how others perceive you and why you ROCK! Examine your thank you notes, LinkedIn recommendations and testimonials. I’m betting you’ll find they use similar words or phrases to describe how you’ve transformed them or made their life/career better. Their language and those exact phrases will become the backbone of your marketing content as you seek to clone and attract more of your ideal clients.

You will now know how to lead them down the sales funnel and speak directly to their greatest need.

Once you’ve identified patterns on your ideal clients’ “wish list” it’s time to get more quantitative with your research. An easy way to see what’s resonating most is by asking them to select favorites from among your top options. Closed-ended questions (via Survey Monkey, FB polls, etc) can help you test the wording and decide which program content or offers would best entice your target market.

Remember, you’re not married to just one program forever. But you can only win the race to financial freedom if you stop “getting ready to get ready” and start treating your business like a career vs a hobby. Do the research, take your best shot, learn from the journey and do even better next time.

Again, FOCUS is key as you “pick a horse and ride it!”

Rock on,

Rock-Solid Steps for Automating your Discovery Process and Engaging High-End Clients

If you’re a rock star coach looking to grow your tribe of ideal clients, this information can help you get to YES faster with folks who hunger for exactly what you deliver.

It’s a buyer’s market, and rightfully so. As someone who invests in my own career development, it’s important that I align myself with the very best resources and the sharpest coaches I can find. My goal is to shortcut my learning curve and drive results faster than possible on my own.

Advice for coaches

Looking for a streamlined way to on-board potential coaching clients? In the world of high-end, private coaching, it’s unlikely that prospects will come banging at your door and begging you to sign on for larger programs without a bit of hand-holding. They might buy a “do-it-yourself” class through an ad or join a low-cost (eg, low-touch) group coaching program after participating in a free webinar. But an investment of thousands of dollars requires a mutual commitment to your clients’ success. After all, people conduct business with those they know, like and trust. Coaching relationships require intimate sharing of knowledge much like your priest, rabbi, doctor or attorney. Clients depend on you to transform their business, their lives, or both.

You’ve spent time sharing your wisdom generously in the marketplace and attracting your ideal clients’ attention. They’re interested. When it comes to private coaching, however, potential clients deserve to understand exactly what’s in it for them so they can engage you with confidence:

  • How might you address their pain, or potential (the reason they need coaching in the first place)?
  • Do your skills and background prove that you can rock their challenges?
  • Are you a good fit strategically and personally?
  • Are your values and philosophies on success aligned?
  • Will you support their mission and keep them accountable?
  • What does success look like and how will it be measured?
  • What assurances do you offer that your coaching program will deliver on its promises?

Rather, breakthrough discovery sessions are an interactive dialogue that help both parties peel back the onion and reveal if you’ve got the potential for a collaboration. They’re an important prerequisite to see if you’re both feeling the right chemistry and can succeed by working together.

Here are some simple tips for automating the discovery session process.

  1. Create a landing page that explains your philosophy and services.  The important sections include what to expect, who you might serve and why you’re qualified to help.
  2. Invite folks to a free 30 minute discovery call or Skype (via your landing page) during webinars and meetings. Embed your link on blogs and web pages, social posts, news releases, etc.
  3. If interested, prospects should complete a brief, 2-minute survey. (I use Google forms to get prepared for the call). Here is where you ask relevant questions to understand their pain or promise, what success looks like, how important reaching those goals are to them, etc. Ask them to define their sense of urgency and timing to determine if this is truly a hot lead or a longer-term prospect. You want to have the proper time available to give them the quality coaching they desperately need and deserve.
  4. Click to a free calendar schedule app. Calendly’s free app links with my Google Calendar and shows the time slots I’ve allocated for new business development. It also alerts me about the appointment and saves lots of administrative scheduling time.
  5. Have your discovery call questions outlined so that you are efficient with your time, and theirs. Don’t forget to review their Twitter account, LinkedIn page, website and survey form before your call so you can ask meaningful questions. It’s more about eliciting emotional feelings tied to their ambitions and truly listening to their responses (not about selling your virtues).
  6. During the discovery session, always give value! Share at least 1 or 2 solid pieces of actionable advice so that your caller’s time was well-spent regardless of whether or not they decide to hire you today. They must leave the call feeling renewed, re-energized and excited about their next best moves (whether with or without you).
  7. Be clear on recommending their next best moves (eg, outline your coaching program and how they specifically can work with you…with a generous bonus incentive to sign up NOW).
  8. Have your registration page (or proposal) and invoicing templates ready so you can quickly share while they are in decision-making mode.
  9. Have your thank you/welcome automation sequence ready so they know what to expect from you.
  10. Over-deliver on your promises, so they retain services and refer their friends. (Don’t forget to generously reward referrals).

Use your authentic style and attract the high-end coaching clients who deserve to work with you

Rock on,

Pat

Ready to Hire a Business Coach? Ask These 7 Key Questions to Rock Your Discovery Session

If you’re an entrepreneur or executive ready to engage a coach to get you to the next level, you deserve a discovery session interview to ensure you’re trusting the right partner who can rock your goals. 

It’s a buyer’s market, and rightfully so. As someone who invests in my own career development, it’s important that I align myself with the very best resources and the sharpest coaches I can find. The goal is to shortcut my learning curve and drive results faster than possible on my own. I balance the cost of not engaging the right mentors to accelerate my growth.

You both deserve to make the best choice.

In the world of private or group coaching, both parties deserve to enter into the relationship with confidence. Folks might buy a “do-it-yourself” class or e-book through an ad; they may join a low-cost (eg, low-touch) group coaching program after participating in a free webinar. That makes perfect sense for those who will follow directions and prefer truly independent learning.

However, when folks demand more attention and accountability, an investment of thousands of dollars requires mutual commitment to your success. After all, people conduct business with those they know, like and trust. Coaching relationships require the intimate sharing of knowledge much like your priest, rabbi, doctor or attorney. Clients depend on coaches like me to transform their business, their lives or both.

How do you find the right coach?

 

A great coach gives from the heart (what I call a go-giver). S/he will have spent time sharing wisdom generously in the marketplace and attracting the ideal clients’ attention. They’re interested. When it comes to private coaching, however, potential clients deserve to understand exactly what’s in it for them so they can engage you with confidence.

Ask these 7 killer questions to see if you’re a good coaching fit:

  • How does your coaching program or service address my pain, or potential (the reason you seek coaching in the first place)?
  • How will you support my mission and keep me accountable?
  • What accolades do others say in testimonials and reviews?
  • What does success look like and how will we measure?
  • Do your skills and background prove that you can rock my challenges?
  • Are you a good fit strategically and personally (eg, are our values and philosophies on success aligned)?
  • What assurances do you offer that your coaching program will deliver on its promises?

These important questions can be addressed on what I call a breakthrough discovery session. Note, these are NOT pitchy sales calls or free consultations with no outcomes. You will definitely walk away with 1 or 2 awesome nuggets of advice regardless of whether we decide to work together moving forward.

Rather, discovery sessions are interactive dialogues that help both parties peel back the onion and reveal if you’ve got synergy. They’re an important prerequisite to see if you’re both feeling the right chemistry and can succeed by working together.

Rock on,

Pat

Tips for Success with Less Stress: Networking follow-up made easy

Following up from a busy day of networking just became a whole lot easier!

The secret to success is in the follow up.  My networking goal is never to tackle an entire room and grab as many cards as possible. Rather, I strive to make 2-3 meaningful connections so that I can spend time getting to know folks better without losing touch after the event ends.   Prompt, efficient and friendly reconnection makes all the difference.

 Yet after a busy week of seemingly endless great events, my desk was in chaos–until now.  I’ve searched for months to find a simple way to capture the cards and keep the dialogue moving ahead with my new friends and potential colleagues or clients. Evernote Premium (EN) has come to my rescue!

 Exporting Evernote Business Card Contacts into Get Response

On my Android phone  (and iOS, too) you simply need to download the Evernote app. After creating a default CONTACTS notebook, go to the camera option and select that default business card setting. Here you can also sync the app with LinkedIn and enjoy the option to invite new friends to connect there as well.

Use the EN app to shoot a photo of your business card. then select to connect on LinkedIn and/or add to your phone contacts. Be sure to confirm it properly captured the card data, as some faint or reverse printing makes it harder for the digital reader.  In Evernote, go into your CONTACTS notebook and then tag everyone as needed. It’s super easy to create the tags, and you’ll see a drop down once the letters match or it’ll ask you to save as a new tag.

To export, you’ll need to download the FREE Tusk Tools Contact Exporter. After just a moment, I was able to easily follow the instructions on the contact exporter wizard to retrieve entries from EN:

  • Go to EN and select the Contacts file, hit Next.
  • Browse to ID the target location and name your new export file (CSV destination).
  • Hit EXPORT and in a minute the files were exported and downloaded. Easy peasy!

The email/CRM dilemma solved, finally!

The second half of my data dilemma was finding an easy contact manager/email/CRM tool. GetResponse seems to have all I need, including a built-in webinar and some nice landing pages. Most importantly, it makes tagging and sorting and follow up quite simple. This replaces the need for wonky Google Hangouts/WebinarJam and paying for a host of other programs I’ve tested lately.  To upload the new data file into GetResponse, simply open the campaign. match up the columns and import. It took another few minutes to create a pretty newsletter from one of their templates. I’m not super techy, yet It worked like a charm!

Pat

Spark Inspired Action: Start with your WHY

When you speak from the heart, amazing things happen. You light a fire inside the belly of your ideal audience and the laws of attraction start to work their magic.

If you want to deliver a talk that inspires folks to reach beyond themselves and to trust you as the source who can help them exceed expectations. Invest an important 18 minutes to learn from Simon Sinek’s famous 2014 Ted Talk. The bestselling author and keynote speaker explains why it’s so important to “Start With Why.” 

A Lesson from Apple: How to Spark Inspired Action with your “Why”

According to Simon Sinek, the fundamental difference between the “Apples” of the world and everyone else is that they start with “why.” He suggests that we stop focusing on HOW things get done, but rather the value of how our client will FEEL when they experience our products or services.

“The goal is not to do business with everybody who needs what you have. The goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe.”

For example, rather than focus on the features of its machines, Apple prides itself on challenging the status quo, of thinking differently. Hence why Apple evolved as the go-to brand for tech innovation in phones, tablets, and so many other devices.

Simon Sinek’s “Start With Why” philosophy isn’t just about monster corporations. Smart entrepreneurs and executives can apply his wisdom to crafting compelling messaging that moves clients to next best steps. As I prepare to teach yet another group of aspiring public speakers, it’s important to step back and reflect on this fundamental motivation. It’s the secret sauce.

3 Key Takeaways for Presenters:

1. Use “Why” to Think About Your Own Business

There’s a room full of people waiting to know not just the core of your business, but also how it aligns with your “why.” As Sinek noted, nurturing loyal customers is all about attracting folks who share your fundamental beliefs.

Remember: People don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it.

2. Incorporate “Why” into Your Keynote Speech and Marketing Copy

Leading with your “why” best explains the underlying value of what you’re promoting. It sparks the audience’s intrigue so you simply have to close the deal with the details (how and what).

3. Revisit Your Ideal Client Avatar

Remember, people don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it. So let’s build our storytelling around our audience in terms of what makes them tick, of who they are. Are your core values aligned? Why should they trust your recommended next best steps? What will you share with them personally and professionally over a lifetime? Get beyond the stodgy demographics and find some common ground so you will have fun while you tackle challenges together.

If you’re in the personal service industry and relate 1:1 with individuals, think about them in the context of their world, their families, hobbies, fears, and values. Why do they buy from you versus competitors? Are you the reachable, customer-friendly partner in an industry full of bureaucratic large companies? Do you share a love of golf, of certain charities? Do you empower women to gain financial independence and a solid backbone so they are not left in shock one day when the world shifts beyond their expectations? Are you making the world a better place, and your customers love you because they share strong believe in your cause?

Whatever the reasons, fine-tune your buyer personas or avatars to align with your “why” and build a team of loyal advocates. Go ahead, ask them to join you on your mission.

When folks believe in your “why,” they’ll blossom from simply prospects or customers into your best evangelists.

I challenge you to spend some time this week thinking clearly about your WHY and how it inspires all that you do.

Tell us below…what is your number one area where you’d like to FOCUS and make huge progress in the next 90 days?

Pat